How Much did Yesterday’s Facebook Outage Cost Businesses?

Power Retail By Power Retail | 06 Oct 2021

While many Australians woke up to the social media outage yesterday, it caused a larger wave than at first thought. How much did this six-hour shut-down cost businesses?

For about six hours, social media platforms Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook were inexplicably down, causing a multitude of issues for businesses that rely on the platforms for revenue and marketing.

While this outage was not as long as 2019, which went for a whopping 24 hours, the six hours it was down may have cost the industry a small fortune. The issue itself was at first described as a configuration issue. It was then confirmed as a shut down of the company’s backbone connection, which then switched off the DNS servers.

According to Sam O’Brien, Chief Marketing Officer at Affise, the outage cost more than just an egg on the face of Mark Zuckerberg and his team.

“Last night’s outage is estimated to have cost $17 million (USD) an hour, so approximately $102 million in total, and when you look at how many businesses use ads on the platform this is hardly surprising!” he said. “Yesterday’s outage of such prolific platforms caused a global panic amongst not only the users who felt lost without access to their profiles and ability to communicate with those closest to them, it also would have had a severe impact on planned social activity for millions of global businesses,” he said.

The social media platform has 3.5 billion monthly active users across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and/or WhatsApp.

Facebook and Instagram are the leading online advertising platforms for businesses. Facebook accounts for nine percent of all digital advertising. Furthermore, 92 percent of social media marketing is on Facebook, and more than four million businesses rely on Instagram Stories per month. is figure is only increasing, said O’Brien.

“Using a platform like Instagram Stories ads to target and engage with potential new customers gives brands and companies of all sizes the opportunity to showcase a full-screen experience and highlight their offering to users of the app,” he explained. “There are no doubt many marketers breathing a sigh of relief this morning that the pressure of the outage didn’t last longer than six hours – I know I am!”

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